Multiplex PCR assay for simultaneous detection of nine clinically relevant antibiotic resistance genes in Staphylococcus aureus

J Clin Microbiol. 2003 Sep;41(9):4089-94. doi: 10.1128/JCM.41.9.4089-4094.2003.


In this study we describe a multiplex PCR assay for the detection of nine clinically relevant antibiotic resistance genes of Staphylococcus aureus. Conditions were optimized to amplify fragments of mecA (encoding methicillin resistance), aacA-aphD (aminoglycoside resistance), tetK, tetM (tetracycline resistance), erm(A), erm(C) (macrolide-lincosamide-streptogramin B resistance), vat(A), vat(B), and vat(C) (streptogramin A resistance) simultaneously in one PCR amplification. An additional primer pair for the amplification of a fragment of the staphylococcal 16S rDNA was included as a positive control. The multiplex PCR assay was evaluated on 30 different S. aureus isolates, and the PCR results correlated with the phenotypic antibiotic resistance data obtained by the broth microdilution assay. The multiplex PCR assay offers a rapid, simple, and accurate identification of antibiotic resistance profiles and could be used in clinical diagnosis as well as for the surveillance of the spread of antibiotic resistance determinants in epidemiological studies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis
  • Drug Resistance, Bacterial / genetics*
  • Genes, Bacterial*
  • Humans
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / genetics*


  • DNA, Bacterial